What is the current physical appearance of the stars we see?

Ive heard that when we look into the night sky at the stars your actually looking into the past because the light we see took millions of years to travel to earth so we could see light from the stars beginnings or past appearance. So what do stars physically look like if we were actually looking at the present day? stars would some some look dimmer still bright? or are some In the processs of dying or dead and if those stars are still bright or dim would that mean that only people who live millions of years from now would be able to see the current light emitted by a star? Just like we see light from millions of years ago? And for the dead stars how long will it take for the light to eventually Dissapear

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  • 8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    yES YOU ARE LOOKING INTO THE PAST, EVEN OUR OWN SUN IS EIGHT MINUTES BEHIND BECAUSE OF THE DISTANCE IT IS FROM US, YOU ARE LOOKING AT THE SUN, HOW IT WAS 8 MINS AGO

  • GeoffG
    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    This is a common misconception. The stars we see at night are not millions of light years away. They are at distances ranging from 4 light years to a couple of thousand light years, so at most we are seeing them only a few thousand years ago, which is nothing in the lifetime of a star, measured in billions of years. There are three or four galaxies in the sky visible to the naked eye which are farther away than a few thousand light years, but even these probably haven't changed significantly while their light has been travelling towards us.

  • 8 years ago

    The stars you see with you eyes are just about all the same now as you see them. The light has taken a few hundred or a few thousand years to get to your eyes. Not millions -- the stars that far away are not visible except with telescopes.

    In just a few thousand years, stars don't change. Out of the 2000 or 3000 stars you can see, maybe one -- just one or two -- might have changed enough to notice. Or maybe not. All the others would look the same "now" as they did thousands of years ago.

    You would have better luck worrying about your car parked outside in the street -- has it changed much since you last saw it a few hours ago? Maybe the paint job is a bit dimmer? I think not enough to notice.

  • 8 years ago

    We see everything in spacetime memory.

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